Executive board


Betty Chan Po-king

Yew Chung Education Foundation, Hong Kong SAR China
Dr. Betty Chan Po-king was elected the President of PECERA at its Annual Conference in July 2012. She previously served as the Vice President and Treasurer between 2004 and 2012, and was the Founding President of the PECERA Hong Kong Chapter since 2007. Dr Chan is Director of the Yew Chung Education Foundation, operating a network of international schools in Hong Kong, China, and Silicon Valley (USA), providing Early Childhood, Primary, and Secondary education. She received her B.Ed. and M.Ed from the University of Hawaii, specialising in Early Childhood Education, and was later awarded the AAUW Scholarship to begin her Ph.D. at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign under the mentorship of Prof. Bernard Spodek. After returning home to Hong Kong to succeed her mother, the Founder of Yew Chung, she later completed her doctorate in 1985 at the Union Institute and University, under the supervision of Prof. Roy Fairfield and Prof. Sarah Smilansky. Dr Chan is a well-known leader in the field of Early Childhood Education in Hong Kong, having introduced concepts such as “learning through play” and “open classroom” in the 1970s. She became a member of the Phi Delta Kappa Educational Foundation in 1973, and was Convenor and Chairperson of the UNICEF "Childhood in 21st Century" international conference in 1989. Later she focused her efforts on developing a new model of international education, uniting the best elements of the East and the West. She is the Chairperson of the Alliance for International Education (AIE) China Branch since 2008. She also served on various public government advisory committees in Hong Kong, e.g. the Standing Committee on Language Education and Research (SCOLAR) of the Education Bureau (2000-2007), Advisory Committee on Teacher Education and Qualifications (ACTEQ) (2001-2007), etc. In recognition of her pioneering work in Early Childhood Education and consistent advocacy for excellence in all levels of education, Dr Chan was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, US in 2010, Honorary Fellowship from the Hong Kong Institute of Education, and an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws from the University of Bath, UK in 2015.

Immediate Past President

Won-Young Rhee

Chung-Ang University, Seoul, Korea
Dr. Won Young Rhee was elected the President of PECERA at its annual conference in July 2008. Dr. Rhee is Professor Emeritus of Early Childhood Education at Chung-Ang University in Seoul, where she taught for 33 years. She received her master's degrees from Ewha Womans University in Seoul and the University of Washington in Seattle, and her doctorate in Early Childhood Education from Ewha Womans University. After receiving her master's degree, she decided to work as a kindergarten teacher in order to acquire practical knowledge. She joined the faculty of the College of Education of Chung-Ang University in 1975. Dr Rhee's research and academic fields of interest are child-centered philosophy and education, and parent education. She has published many books for parents and has carried out extensive research in the field of early childhood education, mostly in Korean. From 1983 to 1984 she spent a sabbatical year at Sheffield University in the U.K., where she learned the child-centered teaching method of open education. Dr. Rhee worked in Korea extensively to improve the quality of young children's lives and the quality of early childhood education by persuading the Ministry of Education to pass the Early Childhood Education Act in 2004. She worked as a member of advisers' committees for two different presidents from 1996 to 1998, and from 1999 to 2003 for educational reform in Korea. In addition, she was president of the Korean Society for Early Childhood Education for five years from 1991 to 1995 and also was president of OMEP Korean Committee for three years.


Worawan Hemchayart

Chulalongkorn University, Thailand
Dr. Worawan Hemchayart was the Founding President of the PECERA Thailand Chapter since 2008. Dr. Hemchayart is the Vice Present of PECERA at its annual conference in July 2012. She was elected a head of division of early childhood education from 2007 to 2008. She is Assistant Professor in Early Childhood Education, Faculty of Education at Chulalongkorn University in Thailand, where she has been teaching for 16 years. She received her bachelor’s and master's degrees from Chulalonglorn University, and her doctorate from Teachers College, Nebraska University at Lincoln, USA. Dr. Hemchayart’s research and academic areas of interest are multicultural education, curriculum, teaching and teacher education in early childhood education. Her teaching courses are in both undergraduate and graduate levels; such as Methodology of Teaching at the Early Childhood Education Level, Learning Areas Integration for Young Children, Teaching and Developing Strategies for Early Childhood Professionals, and Practice and Research in Early Childhood Education. Furthermore, she works as a member of the dissertation proposal approval committees and as a member of the annual book contest approval committees. She is a guest speaker of the Local Administrative Organization and a peer reviewer of Journal Education Studies, of Online Journal of Education (OJET), and of Asia-Pacific Journal of Research in Early Childhood Education (APJRECE).


Lynda Boyd

University of Canterbury, New Zealand
Lynda Boyd is from New Zealand. She has been involved in early childhood teacher education since 1990. She is currently the Manager for the Centre for Professional Practice and Partnerships at the University of Canterbury College of Education in Christchurch. She was for many years the Head of the Early Childhood Teacher Education Programmes managing the degree and graduate diploma programmes offered by the College. Lynda has a particular interest in teachers’ cultural competence. She has undertaken training in the Cultural Detective method and has undertaken research on students developing cultural competence. Lynda serves on the College’s Māori and Bicultural committee and on the University of Canterbury’s Equity and Diversity Committee. Lynda’s other research interests include early childhood student teacher competencies and dispositions, the role of the early childhood teacher and developments and changes in early childhood teaching and teacher education over the decades. Lynda has been involved in national early childhood organisations and committees and continues to take a keen interest in early childhood education in New Zealand and beyond. Lynda has been involved with PECERA since its inception.


Soyoun Bae-Suh

William Paterson University, USA
Dr. Soyoun Bae-Suh was elected the Treasurer of PECERA at its annual conference in July 2012. Prior to 2012, she had served as the Secretary of PECERA since 2003. Dr. Bae-Suh graduated from Ewha Women’s university in South Korea, majoring early childhood education. She earned M.Ed. in early childhood education from University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; and Ph.D in education with concentration of early childhood education from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA. She was a research assistant of Dr. Bernard Spodek while studying at the U of I; and a recipient of William Chandler Bagley Fellowship in 1988. Dr. Bae-Suh taught early childhood teacher candidates since 1989 both in Korea and in the USA. She was an Associate Professor of Child Study, Kyungwon University in Korea from 1990 to 2003; and of Teacher Education, Rowan University, New Jersey in the USA, from 2003 to 2013. While working at Rowan University, she was a coordinator of the Early Childhood Education Program. She was also a recipient of Wall of Fame, which is awarded by graduates of Rowan University, in every year from 2007 to 2013. She is currently working in the Dept. of Elementary and Early Childhood Education, William Paterson University in New Jersey, USA.

Journal Director

Young-Ja Lee

Duksung Womans University, Korea
Dr. Young-Ja Lee was the first editor of the APJRECE (from 2006 to 2010) and now is working as a co-editor. Dr. Lee is a Professor Emerita of Early Childhood Education at the Duksung Womens University, Seoul, Korea, where she has taught since 1977. She received her Bachelor’s degree from the Ewha Womens University in Early Childhood Education, received her master’s and specialist degree at the Indiana University in the field of Instructional Systems Technology, and received her doctorate (Ed.D) at the Boston University in Early Childhood Education. Her research and scholarly interests are in the area of early childhood curriculum and instruction, language and literacy, and instructional media for young children. While she is teaching at the Duksung Womens University, she also worked as a director of the Duksung Womens University Kindergarten attached to the Duksung Womens Universiy and the principal of the Unhyun Elementary School associated with the Duksung Educational Foundation. In addition, she was the president of the Korean Society of Early Childhood Education from 1984 to 1988. She also was the president of PECERA Korea from 2006 to 2008.